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Thursday, February 13, 2014

New Health Care Liability Action Regarding an Unavailable Expert Witness: New Trial Ordered

The Court of Appeals released its opinion in Cullum v. Baptist Hosp. Sys., Inc., No. M2012-02640-COA-R3-CV (Tenn. Ct. App. Feb. 12, 2014).  Here is the summary from the slip opinion:
The trial court prohibited the use of taped testimony from a prior trial when a doctor exercised his statutory right not to appear at trial, ordering that the doctor “needs to testify live or not at all.” Efforts of the defendants’ counsel to secure the doctor’s live testimony were successful, only to have the plaintiffs’ counsel argue that counsel was being ambushed.  The trial court finally determined not to allow the doctor to testify. The issues relating to prohibiting the doctor’s taped testimony and then prohibiting the doctor’s live testimony were appealed, along with other issues that arose during the trial. We find these two testimonial issues dispositive. We reverse the trial court on both issues and remand for a new trial.
Here's a link to the opinion:

This will be the fourth trial of this case upon remand.

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